a cracked and yellowing copy of Casablanca
runs, sometimes, in a little theater
just behind my heart (around the corner
from the moment we met): Rick sits
embedded in quicksand, elbows holding
the table down, pouring endless whiskey in
to douse the smoldering pile of memories'
ashes on the floor of his stomach.
piano keys are tinkling, constantly
just out of earshot; Sam, slumped
over the keyboard, elbows-to-keys,
palm-to-cheek, unshackled, supporting
the weight of Rick's slack jaw
and faraway ...